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26 of 52: Stormwatch #1

by on September 8, 2011

Based on the twitter buzz, I chose Stormwatch #1 as my third of the new 52 comic books that I purchased and chose to read.

In case anyone was wondering, I am reading all of these on Comixology, spending the full $2.99 on a comic book that I am not holding in my hand. Please don’t misunderstand, I like and in some ways PREFER individual comic books (or pamphlets as they are sometimes called). But the reality of storing, collecting, sharing, inventorying, and trading comic books is as passé at this stage of my life as beer pong and VHS tapes.

(or more simply put, I don’t have enough room in my house and I really hate longboxes)

With that all said, let’s review Stormwatch #1 (as spoiler free as possible)

Stormwatch #1
Writer: Paul Cornell | Penciller: Miguel Sepulveda

One word: WOW!

Now THIS is a debut of a comic book. I have not read any version of either Stormwatch or The Authority (only due to financial resources), but regardless… I am very impressed with this comic book. The action is tight, the mysteries are exciting, and the characters are very lively.

Quick Synopsis

In their satellite, the members of Stormwatch, Engineer is monitoring the developments throughout the world, and is conversing with team members Adam (Adam One) and Jenny (Jenny Quantum).

On Earth, Engineer has sent three members of Stormwatch to recruit a man with “Superman-Level” powers. Jack Hawksmoor, Martian Manhunter, and The Projectionist confront Apollo in Moscow to try to recruit him into Stormwatch. Apollo has disdain for superheroes. Hawksmoor is able to manipulate things on a city level. Projectionist is able to use alien tech to scan and manipulate media. Apollo runs away from the team regardless.

On the Moon, Harry Tanner (The Eminence of Blades) is investigating a disturbance, when the surface of the moon turns against him. A creature confronts Harry and tells him that a great evil is coming. The creature evaluates Harry’s brain and evaluates him and Stormwatch.

In the Himalayas, Adam One and Jenny Q discover a giant horn (or worm), and begin to teleport it (to their headquarters I think)

Finally, in Moscow, Martian Manhunter does his best to convince Apollo of their intentions, when another superhero attacks Stormwatch, and offers Apollo another choice. Save the identity for spoilers, but you can figure it out… they don’t COVER it up too well… (Get it… Cover? HINT HINT)

Analysis

I was starting to think this was a mistake. I mean $78.00 for comic books is not a TON of money for 26 comic books, but it’s not pocket change either. Justice League had potential but was unexciting. Batgirl was very disappointing.

However, this was a home run. I loved this book.

Paul Cornell and company had to introduce seven new characters to me in twenty pages (I already knew Martian Manhunter, and the hero on page 20 wasn’t explored enough). I got a solid sense of all the characters. Engineer is the back end support coordinator. Tanner is the swashbuckling hero. Adam One is the smart ass. Jenny Q is the young girl with high expectations placed on her. Hawksmoor is the leader type. Apollo is the rebel who doesn’t think he fits in anywhere.

Cornell establish three plotlines and none of them felt rushed. The story had a real Torchwood feeling to it, and that’s a positive thing. The sense is that Stormwatch is a group of individuals who have a common goal, but it is their life and livelihood rather than just their duty.

Questions

  1. Jack Hawksmoor says that they aren’t superheroes, that they are profesisonals. Well, professionals get paid, that’s the definition of “professional”. So, who’s paying for Stormwatch to be in existence?
  2. Apollo recognizes Martian Manhunter as being a former member of the Justice League. Why is he with Stormwatch now?
  3. The creature on the moon reminds me of a Legion of Superheroes (actually L.E.G.I.O.N) villain. I wonder if they are connected, or just look similar.

Verdict

This book was really amazing. I am totally on board with this story. Totally modern storytelling, and very big picture. Martian Manhunter still seems like he’s an add-on to the team to mainstream the group into the DC Universe, but otherwise everything was great.

I’m totally going to purchase #2, barring a major financial hit.

A (Amazed)

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From → Comic Books, DCnU

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